Hanukkah (mostly not) on the Hill: Over 400 people gather virtually for Parliament’s first national candle-lighting ceremony

A screenshot from Parliament's "Hanukkah on the Hill" celebration, featuring 400 guests. Liberal MP's Anthony Housefather and Ya'ara Saks, and Dr. Isaac Bogoch with his wife Linda.

For years, “Hanukkah on the Hill” has been an annual in person event for Jewish Members of Parliament and politicians from all stripes, including the prime minister and leaders of the opposition. Hanukkiahs are lit, prayers are said, politics get set aside.

But things looked a little different this year. While some politicians got together in-person, including the organizers, Liberal MPs Anthony Housefather and Ya’ara Saks, most others joined in virtually—including Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Conservative leader Erin O’Toole, NDP leader Jagmeet Singh, senators, judges, rabbis, Dr. Isaac Bogoch, Irwin Cotler and well over 400 guests who lit their own hanukkiahs from the privacy of their homes.

If you missed it, you can hear highlights from the event on today’s episode of The CJN Daily podcast, including concerns over the growing threat of antisemitism nationwide and what Ottawa pledges to do about it in 2022.

What we talked about:


The CJN Daily is written and hosted by Ellin Bessner (@ebessner on Twitter). Victoria Redden is the producer. Michael Fraiman is the executive producer. Our theme music is by Dov Beck-Levine. Our title sponsor is Metropia. We’re a member of The CJN Podcast Network; find more great Jewish podcasts at thecjn.ca.